9.30am to 5pm

Prehistoric pottery (Small)

The course

Working with local clays, students will explore the techniques and create pots that echo those found at the Neolithic causewayed enclosure at the Trundle hill near to the Museum. On the course you will cover clay preparation, as well as three different types of hand building techniques and decoration. There will be the opportunity to return to the Museum to take part in a pit firing of the pots on Sunday 3 August 2014. The firing day will began at 9am and continue until the pots have finished firing, 6pm or later. If you haven't attended the pit firing you will be sent your pots in the post.

The tutor

Alison Sandeman runs her well established pottery studio in a rural setting near Rowland’s Castle, in West Sussex. She is well known for her functional pots and more recently her individual ceramics in stoneware, porcelain and Raku. Alison is also a long standing tutor at West Dean College, where she teaches pottery and ceramics on the Short Courses Programme. She also teaches making skills and clay technologies to the students on the MA and Diploma Programme in Conservation of Ceramics and Related Materials. For the last ten years Alison has been exploring ancient making and firing techniques, which includes pit firing, and archaeological clay technologies. Strong links with the Chichester District Museum, and their Collection Stores at Fishbourne are an essential part of this exciting process.  She is also currently working on a research project with University College London, on ancient making techniques. Alison’s work has been shown in galleries and museums around the country and is in collections worldwide .She regularly exhibits at local venues and at her pottery. She has been a member of the Southern Ceramic Group for a number of years, and is an Associate member of the Craftsmen’s Potters Association.

Participant information

Please wear appropriate clothing and footwear.


£95 per person, to include tuition, materials, teas and coffees. The Museum café will be open or you can bring a packed lunch.

The Museum

The Weald & Downland Open Air Museum has over 45 historic building exhibits.  It is also home to the award winning and innovative Downland Gridshell, which houses a conservation workshop and artefact store, and is also used for many practical courses.  The Museum runs a full programme of courses in historic building conservation and traditional rural trades and crafts, along with MSc programmes in Building Conservation and Timber Building Conservation validated by the University of York. Please telephone for further details.

To book, download a form here. Alternatively, fill in the booking request below. Please read our terms and conditions before booking.

Make a Booking Request

This is an initial booking request form, and does not guarantee a place on the course. The Adult Learning Team will check the availability of the course, and reply to you as soon as possible - usually within one working day.